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Interview with Joe Biden; Thousands Line Up for Inaugural Parade; Interview with Valarie Jarrett.

Aired January 21, 2013 - 13:30   ET


ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: Alina, how long has Thom Browne actually been designing clothes for women? I've always known him as a men's wear designer.

ALINA CHO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It's interesting you point that out. He started his label in 2003 with his first ready to wear collection. There you see him. He really popularized the notion of the shrunken suit for men. If you semen wearing those cropped pants and those tight-fitting suits, that's because of Thom Browne. He created that look. He has officially done women's wear for quite some time, more officially in the past couple years. When I asked him, will this help your business, what do you think it will do in terms of affecting your business? He laughed and said, it certainly won't hurt.


Then he added what he hopes will happen as a result of this moment, being part of such an important moment in history, is that people will take a look at his women's wear with a different eye. And I believe that people in America and around the world now will.


CHO: And they certainly will know the name Thom Browne -- Anderson?

COOPER: There's no doubt about that. Of course, a lot of eyes will be watching Michelle Obama tonight to see what she's going to be wearing to the two inaugural balls that they will be going to.

Also coming up, of course, the parade, which not only are President Obama and Mrs. Obama going to be in the parade, there are representatives from all the 50 states. It's going to be a lot of fun. Of course, we're going to broadcast all of that to you. It's the tradition now that the president gets out of the beast, the very armored vehicle, and walks the parade route. We saw that four years ago on this day. Hopefully, we'll see that again today. All of that will be brought to you again shortly.

But now our exclusive interview with Vice President Biden. Our Gloria Borger sat down with him the other day. He talked about how his relationship with President Obama and how it's evolved.


GLORIA BORGER, CNN CHIEF POLITICAL ANALYST (voice-over): If there is an odd couple of American politics, it's President Obama and Joe Biden.

JOE BIDEN, VICE PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: What made it work is that, if you go back to the days when we were actually competing for the nomination, all the debates we had, the only two people who didn't disagree on any subject were Barack Obama and Joe Biden. So when we got into this deal, we didn't have what other administrations have had, where the vice president and president have a different take on the major issues of the day. We were totally simpatico. And what developed and it made it easier, it went from working with each other to a friendship. We had an actual real trust built.

BORGER (on camera): We know, though, you have disagreed with the president over policy. And you know how to read him pretty well. So how can you tell when you've done something that he doesn't like or that makes him angry?

BIDEN: Oh, that's easy. That's easy. We made a deal early on. When either one of us are dissatisfied, we just flat tell the other person. So lunch once a week, that's when we talk. And when he's not liked something I've done, he flat tells me.

BORGER: He says, Joe, you shouldn't have done that?

BIDEN: He says, Joe, look, I don't agree with the way you did that. Why did you do A, B, C or D? Or he will say, or I will say, hey, man, I don't like the way this is going. This is what we -- you know. So there's complete openness.

But, you know, we haven't disagreed -- we sometimes disagreed on tactic as to how to proceed to try to get what he wanted done, which I've agreed with, but we've never disagreed on policy.

BORGER (voice-over): But there was a problem with timing when the vice president got ahead of the boss in this exchange about same-sex marriage on "Meet the Press."

BIDEN: Men marrying men and women marrying women and heterosexuals men and women marrying are entitled the same exact rights, all the civil rights, all the civil liberties.

BORGER: That caused heartburn in the West Wing.

BIDEN: Even the so-called discussion about my saying I was comfortable with gay and lesbians and relationships, I knew his position.


BORGER (on camera): But you got out in front of him on it. And that's --


BORGER: -- that can be a problem.

BIDEN: I'll tell you how he responded. I walked into the office. He got up, smiled, gave me a big hug and said, tell you what, man, one thing I like about you, you say what's on your mind.

BORGER: You said it caused a little apoplexy around here.

BIDEN: It did, but not with him. Not with him.

BORGER (voice-over): Lately, Biden's become the White House closer, cutting the deal on the fiscal cliff and trying to get one on guns.

(on camera): Are you the only one who can cut deals with Republicans now?

BIDEN: No, no, no. First of all, the only way I've been able to close any deal is because everybody knows I speak for the president. I have his complete support for what I'm saying because I know what he wants, number one. Number two, I think the reason why we make a good team -- you know, Tip O'Neill used to say politics is local. You've heard me say. I seldom disagree with Tip O'Neill -- God bless his soul -- but politics are personal, and it's based on trust. I have spent a lot of time in this town, and I have personal relationships with people I strongly disagree, but there's trust. And so I'm a logical person, a logical person to, as they say -- you guys say, close the deal. But it's the president, it's not me. It's the president.

BORGER: But it's no secret that you and the president are very different people. You're hot, he's cool.


You're a natural backslapper. He's been accused of being more insular. Does the marriage work because he married his opposite?

BIDEN: Well, look, I think what you hope -- and he used this phrase one time, that we kind of make up for whatever weaknesses the other guy has, and I've got a hell of a lot more weaknesses than he does. The one place that I have just had a lot of experience with a lot of the people we deal with. And, you know, everybody talks about, well, it's backslapping. It's not. It's trust. It's simple trust. Find a single person, and you know this, who will look you in the eye and say, I don't trust Joe Biden. It's just I've been around longer, and they know me, but they also know I speak for him. And he will keep whatever commitment I make on his behalf.


COOPER: Interesting. Gloria Borger joins us now.

Was there anything that surprised you about the vice president?

BORGER: What surprised me was that he was trying to be so circumspect because he knew this was going to run on Inauguration Day. So he was trying to be pretty careful. In the next piece we will run later in the day, I asked him about running for the presidency, and he wouldn't give that one away, either. But --

COOPER: So they are very different men. BORGER: They are completely different. They complete each other.


They -- Joe Biden loves to do the things that President Obama hates to do. You put Joe Biden in a room in the capitol with five Republicans and five Democrats for three hours, and he's having fun. He loves it, because he's been in Washington for four years. That's what he's done his entire life.

I hesitate to say this, but I think if you did that to the president, he wouldn't be having as much fun.


COOPER: This may be President Obama's last inauguration, certainly, but what about Vice President Biden? Gloria Borger asked him if he would run for the top job that might pit him against Hillary Clinton. We'll have that later.

And we'll go to the parade route where people are already lining up to see the president, the bands and the floats. All that is ahead. Stay tuned. A lot to look forward to.



UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Carter made the decision, apparently, just three weeks ago that he would walk on his way back to the White House. It was a feeling with Carter that he was being a people's president as opposed to the interior guard that has surrounded Nixon. So he's walking. Amy is running around next to him. There is a sense of exuberance and a sense that something exciting is happening. In a certain sense, it was the most important event of the inaugural. It was a great moment. It was very smart dramatically for him to do that.



#: Welcome back to our continued coverage of the presidential inauguration. While President Obama and the vice president and their families are eating lunch inside the capitol, most folks are heading over to the parade grounds.

Let's check in with Erin Burnett, who is standing over at Freedom Plaza.

Erin, how are the crowds where you are?

ERIN BURNETT, HOST, ERIN BURNETT: People have been gathering, as we've been telling you, you have to walk a few blocks after you get in the security area to actually get where we are. There's lines, I don't know, something like 80 or a hundred people in line, but everyone was in a good mood where we were. They're going up to the main viewing area where the president will be. They're playing some music to get everyone all ready to go, and obviously we're just waiting for that.

I'm here with Brianna Keilar.

And we've been talking about who is in this parade. There's some really interesting stories. But I know you've been reporting on the first family and what they're like, and this is a very personal parade for them, right?

BRIANNA KEILAR, CNN CORRESPONDENT: it really is, specifically going through some of the participants. You can see some of the causes that are so near and dear to the first lady's heart, that they are represented here. Military spouses will play a role in this parade. Veterans will play a role. She has championed the cause of joining forces where she works with military families, where she works to sort of provide, I guess, a highlight for companies that are providing jobs for veterans coming home.

And also I noticed that there will be participation by kids from Belew (ph) High School, which is a high school here in Washington, D.C., in the Anacostia neighborhood. This is a high school she's visited trying to reach out to at-risk kids. Mentoring is also a very key part of her causes. It just is sort of represented.

But I think a lot of people here are wondering, will they get to see the first lady and the president in person? Will they be getting out, perhaps, where they can catch a glimpse of them?

BURNETT: Right. Last time, of course, they got out two times during the parade, six or eight minutes each, and walked a little bit. Jimmy Carter actually walked the entire route. I don't expect them to do that, but we do expect they'll get out.

And as Brianna and I were talking off camera, that maybe since this is the second time around, they're more confident and calm, maybe a little less stressed out, and maybe they can get out and spend a little time outside the car.

KEILAR: And there's always security concerns, of course.


KEILAR: So for most of the parade he is inside the heavily armored car. But I'm wondering as well -- and we saw this earlier in some video, where Jimmy Carter was walking, we saw little Amy Carter, nine years old, skipping around.


KEILAR: I wonder if Sasha and Malia will participate. We don't know, but that's something the crowds would certainly appreciate.

BURNETT: They certainly would. Obviously, with security, there is a lot of it. There are snipers here on all the buildings that we can see.

I want to bring in Jim Acosta.

Yes, this is the parade route. We're about halfway or two-thirds of the way along where we're sitting now on Freedom Plaza, again, where the president and first lady got out last time. So we are hopeful that they will this time.

Jim Acosta is going to be riding this entire parade route, literally riding in a car right in front of the president. That's a pretty amazing place to be.

And I want to bring in Jim Acosta right now -- Jim?

JIM ACOSTA, CNN POLITICAL CORRESPONDENT: Erin, I can't wait until we get started.

Let me tell you where we are right now. I'm standing on the back of a flatbed truck. And just to show you how this is going to work, we're going to be just in front of the president's motorcade as the president's escort, as it's called, makes its way to Pennsylvania Avenue. You can see some of the other colleagues in the press around us now, other flatbed trucks. And we're going to do what's called the dance. As we're going down Pennsylvania Avenue, each of these trucks will sort of take a turn to get into that position to get that money shot of the president and the first lady, hopefully, getting out of their motorcade.

And I have to tell you, I've been listening to you the last few minutes, Erin and Brianna, talking about that tradition of the president and first lady getting out of the motorcade and walking down the parade route. Our crew was out here a week ago going through the rehearsal for all of this, and during that rehearsal, the stand-in for the president, the stand-in for the first lady did not get out of the motorcade on that parade route, and that got us all wondering, maybe this won't be happening. We were told by the Secret Service, don't read anything into that.

Just to give a sense of our proximity, we are just standing steps away from the United States capitol. Right over there is where the president is having lunch. He'll come out about an hour or so and start heading down Pennsylvania Avenue, getting on Constitution Avenue first. But have my photojournalist, David Michael (ph), look down the parade route as we speak. It gives you a gorgeous view of Washington, D.C. You can see the line of motorcycles that will be leading this presidential escort as it heads down toward the White House. Members of the military on both sides getting ready to salute. Each one will salute as the president goes by. So it will be quite a sight. We'll be watching it all as we head your way -- Erin?

BURNETT: All right, it's going to be pretty amazing.

For all of our viewers, the parade has become an essential part of Inauguration Day, a big part of the pomp and circumstance and party. But it first began in 1789 with George Washington, whose local militia sort of gathered in the town as he was moving to New York. That's how it started and it has become more and more a formal part of the day as the years have gone by.

There will be about 8800 people marching in the parade from all 50 states. And there will be about 200 animals. We'll see if there will be elephants, as I believe there were, when Dwight Eisenhower was going through this.

Anderson, back to you.

COOPER: All right.

Let's check in with Brooke Baldwin, who is looking at some of the social media and the photographs people are sending out on Instagram -- Brooke?

BROOKE BALDWIN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Yes, it's amazing. The last time we talked, Anderson, thousands of photos came in to us at CNN. Because as we talk about these historic moments on the National Mall and the swearing in, and getting excited about the parade, you have helped us share history with the rest of the world, thanks to Instagram.

So I want to share some of these photos from people here, people at home, sharing this inauguration, sharing this history with everyone.

First, take a look at this picture. You'll see this young man here on the National Mall. His name is Chris Noe. He told us via Instagram that he just wants to be here because this is a once-in-a-moment opportunity, once-in-a-lifetime.

This next one I love. This is a little girl, her name is Maya, and she is in uniform. Her mom is in the Air Force, and her mother's name is Elaine Dabula (ph). And she said this is a way for her to share the moment with the next generation.

And one more, because I know you saw the shots of everyone waving the American flag. Really, the patriotism on the mall during the speeches was palpable. So you see this picture, and this is Adam waving his flag.

So as I let you go, I want everyone out here to wave their flags, wave their flags.


BALDWIN: The crowds are still here for CNN. Continue to send us your Instagram photos. Go to Instagram, and make sure you do the hash tag CNN because we're continuing to collect them and we're throwing them up for the world to see -- Anderson?

COOPER: All right, Brooke, thank you very much.

I want to check in with Dana Dash, who is stand big with a very special guest -- Dana?

DANA BASH, CNN SENIOR CONGRESSIONAL CORRESPONDENT: We have one of the president's oldest friends and advisers, Valerie Jarrett. Thank you so much for coming.


BASH: Especially since I am the last person between you and lunch, which is right there.


JARRETT: That's all right. It's a pleasure.

BASH: You are obviously very close to him. Clearly you were involved in and knew about the process that he went through to write the speech. Take us inside the White House and take us inside the Barack Obama speech-writing process.

JARRETT: Well, it really began in the course of the campaign. And the message that I think everyone heard during the campaign is one that he really embedded in his speech today. He talked about it a lot, he talked about what he wanted to accomplish in the second term, what he thought was doable, where he wanted to push the envelope. And it was a very personal speech to him. You could feel the passion. He delivered it, I think, extremely well, because every single word was one that he just embraced completely. And I think part of what he said was that you can't -- progress isn't compelled by solving those century-long debates about the role of government, progress is compelled by action right now, and he feels that sense of urgency that he felt four years ago.

He's so proud of his record, but he's so humbled by the fact that the American people voted for him for a second term. And because this is his last term, this is the end of his political career, he wants to make sure that every single day counts, and that we think about equality and opportunity.

BASH: And then in terms of just kind of the prose, obviously he is a writer.


BASH: Our Jessica Yellin has been reporting that he kind of turns around phrases like a musician, writing music in his head. Are you a part of the process?


JARRETT: I think that's a very good way of doing it. As I've listened to him talk about his speech and the ideas that he is crafting, he is very gifted with word. He tries to use them in a way where they connect, and everybody can relate to what he is saying. He puts it in terms where you nod your head and go, yes, he is actually talking just to me. And you forget he is talking to everybody. And that is a gift that he has. But it takes hard work. So he does labor over his speeches, and he wants to get it right. But this one he actually finished early. I have known him to finish his speech as he is walking in to deliver it. BASH: When did he finish it?

JARRETT: He finished it a couple of days ago. I don't think he did much to it yesterday. I read it yesterday morning. It read as it sounded today, so. As I said, he has been thinking what he wanted to say for a long time. I think the campaign helped him and got him outside of Washington and got him back with the American people. It reminded us all of why we're here.

BASH: And there has been a lot of talk about the fact that he saw the movie "Lincoln."


BASH: And it really touched him and inspired the way he wrote this speech.

JARRETT: I think it was a deeply moving movie for him. I think you can't compare the Civil War to what we're going through. But we've been through a really tough time in our country. And seeing how Lincoln had to work so hard just to make the progress that he did, how he never gave up, and how resilient he was, and he tried a whole range of different strategies. And I think obviously that resonated with the president. And so it kind of reaffirmed what he already knew, which is you have to be resilient. You have to be determined. And you can't lose your focus. You can't get distracted by short-term political interests.

BASH: Thank you so much.

JARRETT: You're welcome.

BASH: Let us know about the bison. We hear it's pretty good.

JARRETT: I will.

BASH: Thank you.

Back to you, Anderson.

COOPER: All right, Dana. Thanks very much.

We're waiting to hear the president's toast at his lunch with members of Congress. Will he reach out to Republicans? Well, we'll see.

Also tonight -- also this afternoon, we are awaiting the parade. The excitement is gearing up for the inaugural parade. Stay right here to see it all, including Obama's expected walk along the parade route. That should be very exciting.

You can join the conversation on

Now here is another inaugural flashback.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I think what is interesting about Theodore Roosevelt's inaugural parade is that it symbolized the many-sided character that T.R. was. So there you have Harvard alums marching side by side with Indians, marching side by side with cowboys, with Rough Riders so that -- and Chief Geronimo was there. There is a sense in which T.R. had so many interests. There were different sides of him, and the parade symbolized that. It just seemed like this incredibly eclectic parade.



WOLF BLITZER, CNN ANCHOR: Another inauguration tradition is about to happen at the United States capitol, a luncheon for the president and the vice president and a toast by members of Congress.

Welcome back to our inauguration coverage. I'm Wolf Blitzer.

Now that the president has taken his oath and given his speech, many people are heading toward the parade route. I'm at the reviewing stand in front of the White House where the Obamas and the Bidens will watch the parade.

We have much more of our exclusive interview coming up with the vice president, Joe Biden. Gloria Borger asked him about his plans for 2016.

Let's check in with Dana Bash right now, though. She is up on Capitol Hill, watching the latest developments.

Dana, what is going on right now?

BASH: Right behind is Statuary Hall. It is closed to the press. It is officially a private lunch that President Obama is having with about 219 or so other guests. Very small, very exclusive. And we expect to hear him give a toast, which will be open for cameras for us to see momentarily.

BLITZER: Dana, thank you.

Let's go over to the parade route. Erin Burnett is on the scene for us -- Erin?

BURNETT: All right, Wolf, everyone here is getting ready. They have been playing warm-up tunes. No matter what kind of music you like, they've been playing it to get the crowds ready. We'll see whether the president gets out of his motorcade here. Jimmy Carter was the first to do it.

I was actually there that day, Anderson, in swaddling clothes on Jimmy Carter's inauguration. We'll see whether the president gets out and whether the first daughters do as well.

Back to you.

COOPER: Well, the president's public swearing in took place about two hours ago. I hope you were watching it here, of course, on CNN.

Listen to some of it.


JOHN ROBERTS, CHIEF JUSTICE, U.S. SUPREME COURT: Please raise your right hand and repeat after me. I, Barack Hussein Obama do solemnly swear.

OBAMA: I Barack Hussein Obama do solemnly swear.

ROBERTS: That I will faithfully execute.

OBAMA: That I will faithfully execute.

ROBERTS: The office of president of the United States.

OBAMA: The office of president of the United States.

ROBERTS: And will, to the best of my ability.

OBAMA: And will, to the best of my ability.

ROBERTS: Preserve, protect and defend.

OBAMA: Preserve, protect and defend.

ROBERTS: The Constitution of the United States.

OBAMA: The Constitution of the United States.

ROBERTS: So help you God?

OBAMA: So help me God.

ROBERTS: Congratulations, Mr. President.




COOPER: And just in case you missed the speech, I want to take a look at some of the highlights now from the president's inaugural address today.


OBAMA: My fellow Americans, we are made for this moment, and we will seize it so long as we seize it together.


OBAMA: For we, the people, understand that our country cannot succeed when a shrinking few do very well and a growing many barely make it. (APPLAUSE)

OBAMA: We believe that America's prosperity must rest upon the broad shoulders of a rising middle class. We, the people, still believe that every citizen deserves a basic measure of security and dignity. We must make the hard choices to reduce the cost of health care and the size of our deficit. But we reject the belief that America must choose between caring for the generation that built this country and investing in the generation that will build its future.